240SX Chassis Lightening & Strengthening

Substantial handling improvements can be made to the 240SX by lightening and strengthening the chassis.

240SX Chassis Lightening

You can reduce the weight of the car by removing unnecessary parts and replacing heavy components with lighter aftermarket parts.

The following is a list of parts that you may consider removing and their weights:

Sound deadening material:39.8 lbs.
A/C system:29.2 lbs.
Spare tire:28.0 lbs.
Hatch cover, speaker panels, and rear floor mats:23.8 lbs.
HICAS system:22.4 lbs.
Back seats:20.8 lbs.
Automatic seat belts:20.0 lbs.
ABS system:19.0 lbs.
Stereo and speakers:16.8 lbs.
Carpeting:11.8 lbs.
Jack tools and jack cover:6.4 lbs.
Total:238.0 lbs.

The following is a list of parts that you can replace with lighter aftermarket components to save weight:

ProductPossible Replacement PartsPrice
Front seatsBride ZETA III Seat
Sparco Speed Seat
$800
BatteryBuddy Club Racing Spec Battery
Braille Racing Battery
$150
HoodSeibon OEM Style Carbon Fiber Hood (S13)
VIS Invader Type 6 Carbon Fiber Hood (1995-96 240SX)
$520

240SX Chassis Strengthening

Increasing 240SX chassis rigidity is critical for building a good handling car. If the car flexes, suspension geometry changes. Therefore, even if you have a great suspension setup on your car, it will be ruined by inconsistent flexing of the chassis.

The weak points in the 240SX chassis are around the firewall area and the rear hatch area in the S13 fastback. It is easy to get carried away with adding all sorts of stiffening bars and braces. However, many of these parts make very little difference and only add additional weight to your car.

DC Sports Rear Carbon Steel Strut Bar

Below, I list some 240SX body kit components that noticeably improve steering response and overall handling. If you want to stiffen the chassis as much as possible, the best option is stitch welding the frame lines and installing a roll cage. This should only be necessary for a high-horsepower car or one that you plan to race on the track often.

ProductEffectPrice
SPL Front Fender BraceReduces flex in the firewall area$260
NISMO Power BraceStiffens lower front of chassis$190
Okuyama Type-I Aluminum Front Strut BarStiffens front of chassis$210
DC Sports Rear Carbon Steel Strut BarStiffens rear of chassis$165